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‘Play more Tests with us before writing us off’

Bangladesh Test captain Mushfiqur Rahim termed the criticism of their average performance in longer format tad unfair, considering most of the top nations do not invite them for bilateral series on regular basis.

‘Play more Tests with us before writing us off’
Mushfiqur Rahim


Bangladesh will however be playing 10 Test matches in the coming year, mostly abroad, something that augurs well for the immensely popular national cricket team. “I have been playing for 11 years and I have never had so much cricket, Test cricket, in one year (referring to year ahead). We went out of Bangladesh to play Test cricket after almost two years. That’s not acceptable. If you don’t give us an opportunity but keep saying that we are no good, that can’t be fair,” the skipper’s tone was one of hurt laced with sarcasm. 

“How do you find out if we have improved or not? I think that if we do well this year, if we make the most of this opportunity and get good results, then we will get more tours. Test cricket provides with you the best learning curve. And we will improve if we play more and more,” said Rahim, whose sentiments were echoed by their chief coach Chandika Hathurasinghe. Bangladesh has a crazy fan following and the players also are known to get emotional and the Sri Lankan coach feels that they need to learn from India. 

“That’s why we need to play more. The more you play and perform well, you know how to channelize the emotions like the Indian team knows as they are winning and are No 1 side in the world,” Hathurusinghe said. Asked about their shock defeat after scoring nearly 550 against New Zealand, Mushfiqur admitted that the loss did dent their confidence to some extent. 

“Yes, a little bit. But then we have to understand that merely doing well in the first innings can’t be enough. There is a second innings and one needs to be consistent there as well,” he said. For him, both Virat Kohli and Ravichandran Ashwin are threats. 

“To be honest, No. 1 team can’t be No. 1 because of two players. Both Virat Kohli and R Ashwin are great players, but lots of others, like Pujara, Rahul and Nair also did well against England. The pacers did well too, even if they didn’t take five wickets each time. Also look at the runs the lower order scored in every game. Kohli is in great form and he is one of the best in the world. And so is Ashwin. They are both big threats but there are other good players too,” he concluded.

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